Living legend Andrew Young, Jr., former ambassador to the United Nations, former congressman, past mayor of Atlanta and civil rights leader, will be the keynote speaker at the Georgia Symphony Orchestra’s annual Celebrity Luncheon fundraiser.

One of the most fun and engaging events on the East Cobb social calendar, the luncheon will take place on Saturday, March 21, at the Marietta Country Club. Ambassador Young will be joined by a diverse and entertaining group of talented local artists, authors, musicians and business leaders. Proceeds from the event will benefit the GSO’s musical performance, youth education and outreach programs.

Not only are guests certain to be inspired by Ambassador Young, as well as a few other surprises planned, they will select to be seated at a table with one of a carefully assembled collection of influential and creative people in the area to learn about their journey. A specially created three-course menu will be prepared by Gary Sanderson, Marietta Country Club executive chef, and his team.

Highlights of this year’s celebrities include:*

  • Mark Allen: founder and owner of Lazy Guy Distillery
  • Bert Brown: owner of Governor’s Gun Clubs
  • Emily Carpenter: best-selling author and actress
  • Nichole Carr: WSB-TV investigative reporter
  • Randy Crider: Cobb County Fire Chief and interim director of Public Safety
  • Claire Dunaway Cyr: artist
  • Sandra Deal: former First Lady of Georgia
  • Julie Koenig: GSO principal harpist
  • Missy Owen: founder of the Zone and Davis Direction Foundation
  • Dr. Ivan Pulinkala: Dean of Kennesaw State University’s College of the Arts
  • Anthony “TJ” Reddick: personal chef and winner of Food Network’s Chefs vs. Cons
  • Chris Savas: celebrity photographer
  • Bill Waldrop: day lily expert and nationally recognized hybridizer

The luncheon also will provide a great opportunity for guests to indulge themselves from among an array of silent auction goodies, such as rare trinkets and tidbits, stunning fine art and everyday splurges.

Founded in Marietta in 1951, the GSO has become one of Georgia’s finest community-supported, multifaceted performing arts organizations through imaginative programming, visionary leadership and critically acclaimed performances.

Proceeds from the event will allow the GSO to continue delivering classical, jazz and pops concerts of high-quality choral and instrumental music and inspiring and educating young musicians through the Georgia Youth Symphony Orchestra—one of the 10 largest such programs in the country.

Ticket prices start at $50. Good seats still are available. To purchase, visit